Saturday, January 05, 2013

New Kitchen

Editorial piece for the Department's newsletter.

A woman, who seldom found time to cook at home, complained to her husband that their kitchen is not big enough, nor up-to-date enough. She frequently pointed out fancy looking kitchens in Ikea catalog and other catalogues that she could find. “If we renovate our kitchen, it would look better. It would be more comfortable for me to cook more often.”

After several months of the wife repeating and rephrasing the script, the husband relent-ed. The kitchen is now a gleaming cooking area. Did the renovation changed the frequency of the wife cooking at home? It depends how often she cooked before.

She would not have enough skills as a cook if she had not practiced before. Having a new kitchen does not automatically enhance her repertoire of recipe, not does it sharpen her skills. In short, her performance would greatly depend on her previous performance when the kitchen was a jaded and outdated space.

It is not wrong to dream of a better future: we can conduct more scholarly activities if the  Department has more financial autonomy. Or, we can admit more students if we have more staff. However, we should not forget to keep building our personal capacity and improve our job  performance from time to time. We should not be caught clue-less of what to cook when we are placed in a gleaming new kitchen.

Friday, January 04, 2013

cuando cuando

..after PhD, the next target is Associate Professorship. It is not a ship that you can board by buying a ticket. It must be earned by producing quality publications and doing supervision of post graduate research. The supervision is almost  bearing fruits. One, whom I inherited from another (former) supervisor is correcting her thesis for final submission. Another one will be defending her proposal soon.

On my part, writing articles for journal proves to be a major block now. Got the data, but still waiting for the... courage? .... to write.


Wednesday, January 02, 2013


If you want to feel invisible, go to a kedai makan or a restaurant that you know have poor service. Take a seat and wait to find out how long a waiter or waiter finally see you. The best experience is when no one is aware that you are leaving without ordering anything. Congratulations: you are officially invisible.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013


... yang hampir tercapai: mendapat pengiktirafan sebagai jurulatih bertauliah (certified trainer) daripada HRDF.

... yang sudah berbahan, tapi belum mula diadun: menulis artikel untuk jurnal berwasit

... yang hanya menanti orang lain menyudahkannya: menyelia pelajar sarjana sehingga lulus (i.e. diluluskan pembetulan tesisnya)

... yang belum mula apa-apa lagi: menghantar puisi untuk diterbitkan di Berita Minggu

... yang sangat manis kalau dapat dimulakan: menulis buku teks

... yang berharapan besar tidak akan tercapai: menulis di blog secara istiqamah

... yang berada di belakang minda: satu artikel diterbitkan di surat khabar